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Viktor Dyk
Number of games in database: 7
Years covered: 1903 to 1927
Overall record: +1 -6 =0 (14.3%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

Most played openings
C10 French (2 games)

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(born Dec-31-1877, died May-14-1931, 53 years old)

[what is this?]

Viktor Dyk was born in Melnik* and died in Lopud, Croatia. He was a journalist, writer, playwright, politician and a strong chessplayer.

*Wikipedia article: Mělník

Wikipedia article: Viktor Dyk

Last updated: 2018-12-31 03:04:36

 page 1 of 1; 7 games  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Duras vs V Dyk 1-0171903Czech Chess Club ChampionshipC41 Philidor Defense
2. F Chalupetzky vs V Dyk 0-1361908Prague-BC01 French, Exchange
3. J Dobias vs V Dyk 1-0461913Mlada BoleslavC87 Ruy Lopez
4. Reti vs V Dyk  1-0281913Mlada BoleslavC10 French
5. Hromadka vs V Dyk  1-0361913Mlada BoleslavC10 French
6. O Tenner vs V Dyk 1-0351913Master TtA22 English
7. J Kubanek vs V Dyk  1-0281927Kautsky mem 4thA00 Uncommon Opening
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Dyk wins | Dyk loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: Viktor Dyk was a Czech poet, journalist, and part-time politician. During WW1, Dyk was arrested and sentenced to death for his disent (against the Austro-Hungarian monarchy). He drowned while swiming off the coast of England. Dyk's incidental writings about chess and its players were quite witty.
Nov-16-04  SBC: <Gypsy>

wow. Thanks for that information.

Do you happen to know his birth/death dates?

Nov-16-04  vonKrolock: Not wanting to take <Gypsy>'s privilege of answering <SBC>'s question, i found this on-line: <Dyk, Viktorv&#300;k´tôr d&#300;k, 1877-1931, Czech writer and nationalist > <Gypsy>: Your nick is related to "Bohemia" perchance?!
Nov-16-04  vonKrolock: A little more, <SBC>, and thanks <Gypsy> for the hint <Dyk considered his novels, satires, short stories, plays, and poems as weapons in the struggle to free his country from Austrian rule. A long poem, The Window (1920), describes his experiences in an Austrian prison. As a dramatist he is best known for The Messenger (1907), which concerns the Czech loss of independence, and for the satirical play, Andrew and the Dragon (1920).>
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: I just ran accross this 1963 quote by a literary critic: <...Victor Dyk, a tragic character of our lirature, in life as well as death, ...>.

Perhaps the most enduring novel by Dyk is "Krysar" (Pied Piper), Lumir 1911-12. It is a powerful re-telling of the old tale about an enigmatic stranger who leads away the youth of the ancient German town of Hammeln. <"And your name?" "I have no name; I am nobody. I am worse than nobody, I am a ratman -- Pied Piper." ...> goes the opening dialog.

Dyk's version of the story has been turned into a popular stage-play sometimes during early 1970's.

An interesting sideline is the currently prevailing historical theory that the Pied Piper character, as well as the whole Pied Piper leggend, is based on an otherwise forgoten migration of young settlers from Hammeln into previously abandoned regions near Blansko in the South Moravian province of Czech Republic. (Look up noth from Vienna.) The conjecture is that Pied Piper was the musically tallented recruiter for the migration and settlement.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <vonKrolock> The reference to Bohemia in my nickname is coincidental. I earned the nickname because of my taste for simple pleasures of the life "on the road".
Nov-16-04  SBC: <vonKrolock>

Thank you.

If I had realized he was so well known (relatively, of course) would had done my own homework .. but then again, that would have been one less thing to discuss, wouldn't it?

I was curious about his lifespan, because I was thinking of him more as a chessplayer that as a writer and I was wondering where he fit in and why I never heard of him. But I guess he was a chess amateur, but a well-thought-of writer.

I just did a tiny bit of googling, partly on Dyk, partly on the Pied Piper because I love mythology and folklore as much as I love chess.

Oddly the Merriam Webster Dictionary gives this about the Pied Piper:

Etymology: the Pied Piper, hero of a German folktale who charmed the rats of Hameln, Germany, into a river Date: 1925

The date is complete nonsense.

I looked it up in the dictionary because the only definition I know for "pied" is two-toned as in a pied pony. Was the piper two toned?? Or was he just walking and "pied" is actually the French "pied" meaning foot.

<the ancient German town of Hammeln> here, is called Hamelin.

According to , " a cleric named Samuel Erich was the first to publish this tale, which has its origin in Backhaus's Hameln Chronicle from the end of 16th century"

"Over the next few centuries, the legend spread across the globe, inspiring immortal writers such as the Brothers Grimm, Goethe and Browning, Brecht and Tsvetaeva. Other literary adaptations based on the German legend appeared in Austria, France, Portugual, Spain, Sweden, Syria and China. The tale has also inspired numerous works of music, theater and film.

One of the first film adaptations was made in the United States by Theodore Marstone (The Pied Piper of Hamelin, 1911), followed a few years later by Paul Wegener in Germany (The Pied Piper of Hamelin, 1917)."

So, the decade between 1910-1920 seems to be a high point for the piper. (byw, this same site gives 1915 as the date of Viktor Dyk's Krysaø).

Even if I could read Czech, the 79 paged book is out of print and unavailable at Amazon. (And, if I could read Czech, a whole new world of informaton would open for me on the web)

Not only was Viktor Dyk a poet, writer and revolutionary, but he was also considered (by some, at any rate) an anarchist (a philosophy that makes more sense that its common perception would have one believe)

Nov-16-04  SBC: If you can read Czech, you could read Viktor Dyk's Krysar here:

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: A synthesis from several (Czech) sourcess provides these extensions, clarifications, and corrections:

Viktor Dyk (*12.31.1877, Melnik, CR; +5.14.1931 Lopud, Jugoslavia). Born into a quite literary family (eg, brother and nephew journalists/writers); student of A. Jirasek (Czech "Walter Scott"). Formal education in Law. Journalist, poet, editor, founder of a literary group (Bourlivaci = Rebels), playwright, a high-treason prisoner (1916), translator (from German and French; his speciality were translations of french "cursed poets" -- Baudelaire, Corbiére, Desbordes-Valmore, Verlaine), politician (1917), senator (1925), and, we should add, a chessplayer of master strength.

Dyk died of a hart attack while swimming near the island of Lopud off the coast of (then) Jugoslavia. (Either my memory is failing, or I was given the wrong coast, England, way back as a student.)

Krysar was first published, in parts, in journal Lumir (1911-12). It seems that the first book version came out in 1915. Some edditions of Krysar spell Hamelin as Hameln, some as Hammeln. I found no clue why the difference. The Pied Piper legend dates back to 1200's. While the legend sees the young citizen of Hamelin following Pied Piper to their join demise, historians now claim that several South Moravian vilages and family surnames still retain traces of- and clues about the migration and resettlement by the young Hamelin citizen.

Nov-17-04  vonKrolock: <SBC> For me it was slightly different, i heard about Dyk (not all he merits) but dont knew that he was a Chess person too: so i'm seeing also something new... Great link - i'll be tempted to search a Czech dictionnary and grammar to read "Krysar" in the original...

<Gypsy> I see, the reference is coincidental, but not groundless, no?!... All this is vivid for me here far South, because i found the surname Böhm (yes, a great grandmother), and she was born in Bohemia, when it was a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire... And in the other side, my Russian grandfather took part, so to say, in the Czechoslovakian history, visiting the country around 1915-16 (well, it was the War, not exactly a vileggiatura walk. lol) whith the 'blues' from Czar's Infantry...

Nov-17-04  SBC: Thanks again for all this information.

"ratcatcher" would make someone a good handle, I think.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: Dyk is responsible for other remarkable works of letters. In Czech/Canadian writer and publisher Josef Skvorecky names Dyk's "Zmoudreni Dona Quichota' (The Wisening of Don Quichote) as probably the finest tragedy by a Czech playwright. Skvorecky also names Dyk's "Zapas Jiriho Macku" (A Jiri Macek Fight) as one on the three Czech poems that he (Skvorecky) holds as being a good showcase the overall Czech poetic production.

A twilight-zone like curiosity is that, in his last poem "Devata Vlna,' 1931 (The Ninth Wave) Dyk essentially anticipated his own demise in the waves of the Adriatic sea. Such foretelings seem a curious coincidence ammongst great poets; most notably Lermontov's foreteling of his own fatal duel also springs to mind.

<von Krolok> The boldness with which you tackle a language of such reputation for difficulty as Czech delights and amazes. Btw, my warmest regards to the memory of your fine grandparents.

Nov-18-04  vonKrolock: <SBC:

"ratcatcher" would make someone a good handle, I think. > It reminds me of a little poem recited by Herbert in Polansly's film, about the heart as "a rat in the cage", it would not be a wonder to find a reference here in the libretto (in German) of the Opera based on that film, it's basically a translation of the script a sample:<VON KROLOCK (gesprochen): Ich bin ein Nachtvogel.
Tagsüber nicht zu gebrauchen.>
in the film it was (aprox.): !I'm a night bird, i'm not very good in the day light'

<Gypsy> The finest litterature is also a fine motivation to explore new territories - who said that "each new language is a new life"?! - Oh, i have not such a pretention, although You know i heard about the memories of "good old times" in Central-Europe and particularly in cherished Bohemia (thanks for regards) I recorded some time ago a few recent films in Czech - titles like "Faust" or "Kur" (in English it was somewhat like 'alert sign' - by the way a musical, whith lirics) Yes, i found Czech a very resonant language...

Nov-18-04  SBC: Is that from where you derive your handle: Graf von Krolock the vampyre from a musical named Tanz der Vampire?
Nov-18-04  vonKrolock: <SBC> Actually there's a notable scene in the Roman Polansky's film where the Count, alone in the hall of his castle, ponders over a position that could be a game or a problem (a lot of dark pieces surrounding a single light one, if i'm recalling right), when Abronsius and Alfred enter... (oh, i'm not a vamp, gothic nor have same inclinations as Herbert von Krolock...)The reference is a tribute to the Chess scene, to the retro atmosphere, to the castle's architecture, all very inspiring...

<Gypsy> Another great link to Dyk's writings!! I'll also enjoy it's contents

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Picture of 'Mladboleslav (Czech Championship) 1913' participants, incl Dyk:
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <Viktor Dyk: 'Krysar'>

(Links have to be spliced together, in the obvious ways, I hope, to work.)


<Dramatic book reading (in Czech)>


<Animated movie (1985)>

<Musical (Daniel Landa, in Czech, Bratislava version)>

<The movie and the musical are both quite dark interpretations of Dyk's book.>


<Central 'Krysar' song from 1970's play>

<Text draws veiled likeness between Pied Piper and Leonid Brezhnev; and, by extension, other modern dictators.>

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